Renovate to Innovate Showcases Exciting Plans for Berkeley’s Future

Berkeley Preparatory School is undergoing the most transformational period in its history. The breadth, depth and quality of a Berkeley education has never been better, our admissions inquiries are at an all-time high while enrollment remains at capacity, and our bricks and mortar projects are rapidly bringing our campus Master Plan to life.
Everywhere we look around our beautiful campus, we see progress. The most significant symbol of our growth is taking shape: the soon-to-be-completed Gries Center for the Arts and Sciences. This impressive building adds much-needed learning space to house our Middle and Upper Division arts programs, as well as all of our Upper Division math and science programs (and much more). The Gries Center also significantly frees up classroom space in existing areas that will benefit from an ambitious repurposing and renovation campaign designed to bring our Middle Division, and other areas of our school, up to the standards established by the new facilities on campus. Thanks to the visionary work of our partners at Spring Engineering, our blueprint for growth has been created, and we are ready to begin this exciting transformation.

In the coming months, Berkeley will host a series of open houses so that you can learn more about our efforts to meet the growing needs of our thriving school. The initiative, called “Renovate to Innovate,” is part of Above & Beyond: The Campaign for Berkeley Preparatory School and will raise capital funds to support the next phase of the school’s Master Plan. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Renovate to Innovate will greatly expand the curricular opportunities for students in grades 6 to 12 and will bolster the Berkeley experience for the entire school community. Innovations include a Fabrication Studio, an Open Lab and a Middle Division Multi-Purpose room. The physical environment of the existing Middle and Upper Division classrooms will be upgraded to significantly enhance an already impressive learning environment. The Middle Division will gain space for its administrative needs and will strengthen its divisional identity through various design elements.
  • The Jean Ann Cone Library will be redesigned into an open-concept learning commons, with flexible spaces that can accommodate collaborative learning and individual study.
  • A new, state-of-the-art Technology Center will replace what is currently the Help Desk and will relocate to a prime location beside a new technology commons.
  • Additional repurposing efforts include enhancements to Admissions, the Steinbrenner Student Center, the Hoover Writing Center, the Divers Book Store, the Spirit Shop and the Merluzzi Administration building.
  • The goal of the Renovate to Innovate campaign is $8 million. As of January 2015, we have raised just over $2 million.
To execute our exciting vision, we need the entire Berkeley community to respond. While the project is clearly necessary so that we can continue to offer the best possible environment for the education of our students, now and for decades to come, we cannot begin the work in earnest until pledges and donations are made such that we can fund that work. Over 300 families have already committed to the Above & Beyond campaign, and now we need many more to similarly feel called to join the effort. We encourage you to learn more about this inspiring project in the weeks ahead, and we appreciate your strong consideration of making a gift that will help us transform our academic core. Commitments can be pledged and paid over five years. We are the great beneficiaries of the legacy Berkeley families from past generations left to us; it’s now our turn to help Berkeley take its next leap forward, for the sake of our students now and far into the future.


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